By Dr. Chinedu OGBUAGU
It is true that transport fare to the South East at this time is higher than transport fares to either the North or to the South-West. However, this is perfectly understandable and should not be viewed as evidence of wickedness of Igbo transporters.
Firstly, how many persons travel to any part of the South-West or the North during this time? Elementary economics – including transport economics – teaches us that higher demand, especially without commensurate increase in supply, will necessarily translate to higher prices/charges.
Secondly, roads to the South-East are in worst condition, which will entail greater wear and tear, which will in turn mean higher provisions for depreciation or amortization.
Thirdly, time costs money and it cannot cost the same for a vehicle to be on the road for 6 hours as for 12 hours.
Fourthly, transport workers (drivers inclusive) in or to the South-East are paid more during this season.
Fifthly, closure of Akanu Ibiam Airport, Enugu has put additional pressures on static supply of transport services to the South-East, with transporters hardly able to satisfy demand.
Let no one condemn transporters without thinking the matter through. Like me, those who cannot afford to travel now should stay where they are until the exodus reverses.
Early in the New Year, fares to the South-West and the North will become higher than those to the South-East.